Wrongful Death by Joseph P. McClelland, LLC

The law firm of Joseph P. McClelland, LLC helps consumers hurt by credit errors such as being wrongly called deceased, mixed with someone else, and more. 


Wrongful Death Attorney

An attorney will explain that one such item is their lifetime’s worth of earnings from the job or employment.  That means that each year they would have earned that money, you may be able to recover.  Further, all of the natural expenses of life such as rent/mortgage, gas money, food money, health insurance, family, vacation, tools, or whatever someone would spend their money on is not subtracted from the amount of recovery.

Losing a loved one is always difficult, especially when the circumstances might have been prevented. If you’ve lost a loved one in Atlanta, Georgia or elsewhere due to someone else’s negligence because a car accident, medical mistake, or defective product injury you may need an Atlanta, Georgia Wrongful Death Lawyer.

Many statutes, including the Georgia Wrongful Death Act, apply in these cases that control the statute of limitations and civil procedure.  Although the negligent killing or intentional killing of someone is a crime and punishable in the criminal courts, a this type of claim is civil in nature.  There are two different cases altogether.  Be sure to have legal representation that knows the law.

Against Whom Do You Bring the Lawsuit in Georgia?

This question all depends on the facts of the case.  If someone was killed in a car accident, for example, then we would sue the driver of the car.  Included in that, we would ultimately seek out all available insurance coverage to look for compensation.  In the case of an auto accident death, the driver may not have personal assets of any value.  In that case we would start of with the driver’s insurance policy on that car.  Then, we would look for addition car insurance policies on other vehicles owned by that driver or policies of other individuals that live with the driver.  An example would be to look for a spouse with a vehicle.  

After those polices have been located and exhausted, we would then turn to the available car insurance coverage for the deceased.  Their insurance policy may have some provisions that would allow for recovery.  A classic example would be to find uninsured motorist coverage and use that.  

This just scratches the surface, but the overall purpose is to show how many levels of coverage exists and the complications associated with going after different policies from different individuals.

Our law firm will assist family members of the deceased file a lawsuit for their loss.  Many personal injury attorneys and personal injury lawyers do car accidents.  Not all attorneys handle Georgia wrongful death cases.  

We represent clients in Atlanta, Decatur, Marietta, Stockbridge, Jonesboro, Stone Mountain, Monticello, Forsyth, Barnesville, Zebulon, Conyers, Covington, Monticello, Jackson, Griffin, McDonough, Macon and throughout Georgia.

Get Help from an Attorney at (770) 775-0938

What can you recover from the death of a family member?

The law allows you to recover the money they would have earned without taking out the money they would haveLaw Firm Logo spent.  An example of money they would have earned would be salary over the course of their estimated working life.  An example of the money not deducted would be rent or food expenses.

(1) “Full value of the life of the decedent, as shown by the evidence” means the full value of the life of the decedent without deducting for any of the necessary or personal expenses of the decedent had he lived.

Who can bring an action for the killing of a family member?

§ 51-4-2.  Persons entitled to bring action for the death of spouse or parent; survival of action; release of wrongdoer; disposition of recovery; exemption of recovery from liability for decedent’s debts; recovery not barred by child’s being born out of wedlock

(a) The surviving spouse or, if there is no surviving spouse, a child or children may recover for the homicide of the spouse or parent the full value of the life of the decedent.

(b) (1) If an action is brought by a surviving spouse and the surviving spouse dies pending the action, the action shall survive to the child or children of the decedent.

(2) If an action  is brought by a child and the child dies pending the action, the action shall survive to the surviving child or children.


Relevant Wrongful Death Cases



When a person gets injured as a result of an accident caused by a negligent party, the victim can file a personal injury lawsuit to get compensation for the losses incurred. If the victim dies, the negligent party can be sued for wrongful death. Different states have different requirements which must be met before a survivor is compensated. The survivors must establish the essential elements of a wrongful death lawsuit, as explained below:

1. Death.

It is the main element of a wrongful death lawsuit. The survivors must establish that a person died. If the victim is still physically alive, a person cannot receive compensation.

2. Death Occurred as a Result of a Defendant’s Negligence.

It must be established that the negligent actions of a defendant caused the death. The defendant must have owed the victim a standard of care. For example, if a driver causes an accident that leads to the death of the victim, it must be established that the driver failed to take caution and use ordinary skills that a prudent driver could have used.

Another example of an incident that can qualify for a wrongful death lawsuit is when a victim dies as a result of a doctor’s failure to observe standard surgical requirements.

3. The Survivors Suffered as a Result of the Victim’s Death.

It must be established that a person was affected by the death of the victim. For example, it must be established that the deceased was the breadwinner of the plaintiff or offered financial support.

4. The Plaintiff must have a Legal Right to Compensation.

Different states have different legal provisions about the family members who can seek compensation as a result of wrongful death. The following are some of the people who can sue negligent parties in a wrongful death lawsuit:

  • Immediate Family Members.

It is a common rule in all states. Immediate family members include spouses, children, and parents of an unmarried child.

  • Life Partners and putative spouses.

In some states, the life partner of a deceased and their putative spouses are entitled to get compensation in the event of wrongful death.

  • Distant Relatives.

It is applicable in some states. For example, brothers, sisters, or grandparents of the decedent can file a lawsuit.

  • Financial Dependents.

In some states, any person who depended on the decedent for financial support can be compensated even if they are not close relatives.

  • Parents of a Deceased Fetus.

Depending on where you live, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit if you believe that your child died as a result of a doctor’s negligence. The parents are entitled to compensation for financial and emotional losses incurred after the death of a fetus.

Determination of the Amount of Compensation in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit.

No amount of money can replace the loss of a loved one. However, survivors are entitled to compensation based on some of the following factors:

  • The value of household services provided by the decedent.
  • The value of future financial support from the decedent.
  • Funeral and burial expenses incurred.

We can help you with person injury cases, motorcycle accidents, and credit repair in Atlanta.

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